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Salivary secretion and disgust: A pilot study

Vicario, CM ORCID: 0000-0001-7557-9078, Sommer, W, Kuran, KA and Rafal, RD 2017 , 'Salivary secretion and disgust: A pilot study' , Acta psychologica, vol. 178 , pp. 18-24 , doi: 10.1016/j.actpsy.2017.05.007.

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Although a direct link has been established between self-experienced disgust and salivary secretion, it is unclearwhether this physiological index is modulated by the social experience of disgust (i.e., exposure to the facialexpression of disgust). We tested this issue in a pilot study by collecting salivary samples in a group of 20 healthyhumans watching pictures of faces expressing disgust. Moreover, we tried to replicate previous evidence bytesting saliva secretion in response to pictures of unpalatable (i.e., rotten) food and non-gustatory disgustingstimuli (i.e., disgusting insects). Overall, our analysis shows a general reduction of saliva secretion in response todisgust stimuli, compared to their positive counterparts, although further analyses for specific stimuluscategories indicated that this difference was statistically significant only for food pictures. The non-significanceof the face and insect categories might be due to insufficient power of our small sample. Overall, a generalreduction of saliva secretion for different disgust-related stimuli suggests a shared mechanism of encoding, inline with theories of neural reuse.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Vicario, CM and Sommer, W and Kuran, KA and Rafal, RD
Keywords: Disgust, Saliva Secretion
Journal or Publication Title: Acta psychologica
Publisher: Elsevier Science Bv
ISSN: 0001-6918
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.actpsy.2017.05.007
Copyright Information:

© 2017 Elsevier

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